Sound and Light Ecology Team

Sounds of the Parks

Part of our mission is to record the natural sounds of the world for use in long-term monitoring research efforts. Countless species are in peril due to numerous factors associated with human activity, potentially altering entire ecosystems and their associated sounds. By gathering recordings of individual species and entire soundscapes as they currently exist over a landscape, we can track changes in their presence and composition over time, alerting scientists to potential management issues.

Additionally, our recordings may be used for education and outreach purposes. Everyone should be able to experience the natural world in one way or another, and using one's ears can be part of that experience. In the early 20th century, Ansel Adam's captured the public's imagination with his incredible images of the National Parks and beyond. Audio recordings have the capacity to do the same if they are carefully composed to capture the essence of a particular location. These recordings are intended to evoke positive emotions and memories associated with specific times and places in our past. When people become emotionally invested in a place, conservation efforts fall into place that much easier.

We encourage everyone to spend some time listening to these natural sounds. For the best listening experience, use headphones whenever possible!